Academy Award winner Anthony Hopkins gained international recognition as psycho psychiatrist Dr. Hannibal Lecter in ''The Silence of the Lambs'' (1991), a role he later reprised in the follow-up films "Hannibal" (2001) and "Red Dragon" (2002). Previously, the Welshman who made a name for himself as a stage actor in England, had made an auspicious film debut in "The Lion in Winter" (1968), as the scheming Richard the Lionheart, as well as won Emmys for his TV-movie performances in "The Lindbergh Kidnapping Case" (NBC; 1976), as accused kidnapper Bruno Hauptmann, and "The Bunker" (CBS; 1981), as Adolph Hitler. Meanwhile, he made an award-winning Broadway debut in "Equus'' in 1975.
Besides his Oscar win for ''The Silence of the Lambs,'' Hopkins has been nominated for the coveted award for his roles in the films ''The Remains of the Day'' (1993), ''Nixon'' (1995) and ''Amistad'' (1997). He also delivered solid performances in "Howards End" (1992; as Henry J. Wilcox), "Dracula" (1992; as Professor Abraham Van Helsing), "Shadowlands" (1993; as Jack Lewis), "Legends of the Fall" (1994; as Colonel William Ludlow), "Surviving Picasso" (1996; as Pablo Picasso), "The Mask of Zorro" (1998; as Don Diego de la Vega/Zorro), "The Human Stain" (2003; as Coleman Silk) and "Alexander" (2004; as Old Ptolemy). His recent films include "Proof" (2005), "Bobby" (2006), "All the King's Men" (2006), "Fracture" (2007) and "Beowulf" (2007). He will next be seen in the upcoming films "City of Your Final Destination" and "The Wolf Man," as well as in an upcoming biopic about movie legend Sir Alfred Hitchcock.
The actor was inducted into the Hollywood Walk of Fame on September 24, 2003, and was honored with the Cecil B DeMille Award for lifetime achievement in film at the 2006 Golden Globe awards. He was knighted in 1993 and became a U.S. citizen in 2000. He also received the Commander of Arts and Letters medal from the French government.
On a more personal note, Hopkins once dated Joyce Ingalls (actress; born in 1950; met at an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting in 1995; separated in February 1996) and Francine Kay (born in 1956; had a brief romance in 1998). He has been married three times and has one daughter.
"People talk about chemistry. If you know your lines, you know what you're doing and the other actor shows up and they're good and you're good, that's chemistry. There's nothing special. It's not brain surgery." Anthony Hopkins
Childhood and Family:
In Margam, Port Talbot, West Glamorgan, Wales, Anthony Philip Hopkins was born on December 31, 1937. He is the only child of a baker, Richard Arthur Hopkins (died on March 30, 1981, of heart disease), and his wife, Muriel Anthony Hopkins (born in 1913; died in 2003), who is a distant relative of the Irish poet William Butler Yeats.
''I was lousy in school. Real screwed up; a moron. I was antisocial and didn't bother with the other kids; a really bad student. I didn't have any brains. I didn't know what I was doing there. That's why I became an actor.'' Anthony Hopkins
Anthony Hopkins, nicknamed Tony, attended Jones' West Monmouth Boys' School for five terms before going to Cowbridge Grammar School in Glamorgan, Wales. A loner with dyslexia, Hopkins immersed himself in the arts, such as painting and drawing or playing the piano. He joined a community drama club at age 17 while at the YMCA and attended the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama in Cardiff, Wales (1955-1956) on a scholarship. He later learned the basics of his craft at the prestigious Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) in London, England, (1961-1963), a stint that was briefly interrupted by a stint with the Royal Artillery.
In 1967, Hopkins married his first wife, Petronella Barker. They have one daughter together, Abigail Hopkins (actress/singer; born on August 20, 1968). In 2002, Hopkins spoke of his regret at losing touch with his only child and doesn't even know where she lives at the moment.
''When I get too close to someone, I want to move on. I don't feel ready for any commitment. I've hurt enough people." Anthony Hopkins
After Hopkins and Barker divorced in 1972, Hopkins married Jennifer Lynton, a former production secretary, on January 13, 1973. This marriage also ended in divorce in 1999. He is currently married to Stella Arroyave, a Colombia-born antique’s dealer whom he married on March 1, 2003.
As of 2007, Hopkins resides in the United States. He had moved to the country once before during the 1970s to pursue his film career, but returned to Britain in the late 1980s. However, he decided to return to the U.S. following his 1990s success. Hopkins, who was awarded Commander, Order of the British Empire in 1987, became a naturalized citizen on April 12, 2000, but is allowed to retain his British knighthood and the title of Sir.
''America has been very generous to me, magnanimous really. I thought it would be good to give something back. It was a decision of the heart.'' Anthony Hopkins (on becoming a U.S. citizen in 2000)
Hopkins conquered his alcoholic addiction in 1975, two days before his 38th birthday, and became a lifelong member of Alcoholics Anonymous. In his free time, he enjoys driving, playing the piano, reading, writing, and drawing.
He has offered his support to various charities and became the President of the National Trust's Snowdonia Appeal, which raises funds for the preservation of the Snowdonia National Park. Hopkins, who can speak some Welsh, also takes time to support various groups. He was a Guest of Honor at a Gala Fundraiser for Women in Recovery, Inc., a Venice, California-based non-profit organization that offers rehabilitation assistance to women in recovery from substance abuse.
Hopkins is also a volunteer teacher (he teaches everything from Shakespeare to scenes, theory, and monologues) at the Ruskin School of Acting in Santa Monica, California, where he resides. He received an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Letters from the University of Wales in 1988, was named Man of the Year by Hasty Pudding Theatricals of Harvard University in 2001, and was chosen to receive the UCLA Medal, the highest honor at the University of California in 2005.
The Silence of the Lambs
''It has always been my philosophy to ask for nothing, expect nothing, but take everything. I'm actually just grateful that I reached this age, let alone to have arrived with so many incredible honors in tow." Anthony Hopkins
Influenced and encouraged to become an actor by actor Richard Burton, whom he met briefly at the age of 15, Anthony Hopkins enrolled at the College of Music and Drama in Cardiff, from which he graduated in 1957. Following a two-year stint in the Army, he relocated to London and trained at the prestigious RADA. In 1960, he made his stage debut in ''The Quare Fellow'' and then spent four years in a regional repertory before his first London success in ''Julius Caesar.'' He graduated as a Silver Medalist in 1963 and immediately joined the Phoenix Theater in Leicester. He later was a member of the Liverpool Playhouse and the Hornchurch Repertory Company.
''One of the people I got to know years ago, which was a great privilege, was Laurence Olivier. He was like a laser - that was his power. And the only actor I've met since who had that same quality of laser-like determination is Russell Crowe. The first day I started working with him, I thought, 'That guy's got it.' The best way to describe Russell is he's like a shark circling round. He was argumentative. He argued with the director all the time. I don't know Russell that well, but I admire him and you know, whatever he's got to do really. I really like him because he's ballsy, he's got guts, he's macho and all the rest of it. He's going through his bad boy period, but he's basically a nice guy.'' Anthony Hopkins
In 1965, Hopkins joined the National Theatre at the Old Vic after idol and legend Sir Laurence Olivier, who served as artistic director at the time, invited him to audition. The following year, Hopkins became an understudy to the incomparable Olivier and filled in when Olivier was struck with appendicitis during a production of August Strindberg's "Dance of Death" (1966). Olivier later noted in his memoir, ''Confessions of an Actor,'' that, "A new young actor in the company of exceptional promise named Anthony Hopkins was understudying me and walked away with the part of Edgar like a cat with a mouse between its teeth.''
When not starring in live theater, Hopkins was enjoying the beginnings of a stellar film career. He made his film debut in 1968 by playing Richard the Lionhearted (the future King Richard I of England), in the Anthony Harvey directed historical costume drama based on the Broadway play by James Goldman, ''The Lion in Winter,'' starring Peter O’Toole and Katherine Hepburn, as well as future James Bond star Timothy Dalton who played Philip II of France. Hopkins received a BAFTA Award nomination and the film received an Academy Award as Best Picture. He then appeared in 1969's ''Hamlet,'' 1971's ''When Eight Bells Toll'' and 1974's ''The Girl from Petrovka.'' He also starred in the notable miniseries ''War and Peace'' (1972) and ''QB VII'' (1974).
Hopkins, whose personal life was in rapid decline partly due to his alcoholism, moved to Los Angeles, California, in 1974 and quit drinking two days before his 38th birthday. In 1975, he made his Broadway debut in "Equus.” The next year, he won an Emmy for the role of accused kidnapper Bruno Richard Hauptmann in the made-for-television movie ''The Lindbergh Kidnapping Case.'' He went on to star in the TV movie ''Mayflower: The Pilgrims' Adventure'' (1979) and won his second Emmy in 1981 for his portrayal of Adolf Hitler in the TV-biopic "The Bunker." He continued to add to his resume with starring roles in the TV movies ''Othello'' (1981) and ''The Hunchback of Notre Dame'' (1982).
In 1987, the actor was rewarded with the title of Commander of the Order of the British Empire. In 1991, he snagged the lead role of Dr. Hannibal Lecter, a brilliant psychiatrist and cannibalistic serial killer, in Jonathan Demme's film adaptation of the novel by Thomas Harris, ''The Silence of the Lambs,'' opposite Jodie Foster. His performance received general critical acclaim and won him a Best Actor at the prestigious Academy Awards.
''I think he might be a very interesting person to have lunch with, provided that YOU weren't the lunch.'' Anthony Hopkins (on his most famous character, Dr. Hannibal Lecter)
Following his Oscar win, Hopkins was offered a string of meaty roles, including that of vampire hunter Professor Van Helsing in Francis Ford Coppola's Academy Award winning film version of Bram Stoker's ''Dracula'' (1992), and Henry Wilcox, Margaret's (played by Emma Thompson) husband, in James Ivory's Academy Award winning adaptation of E.M. Forster's 1910 novel, ''Howards End'' (1992). He also received his second Best Actor Oscar nomination for his portrayal of Mr. Stevens, the emotionally repressed butler, in his second film with director James Ivory, ''The Remains of the Day'' (1993), an adaptation of Japanese-British author Kazuo Ishiguro's Booker Prize-winning novel of the same name. Although he did not take home the coveted award, Hopkins received the honor of being knighted by Queen Elizabeth, adding a 'Sir' in front of his name.
After portraying discharged Colonel William Ludlow, opposite Brad Pitt and Aidan Quinn, in Edward Zwick's Academy Award winning adaptation of the 1979 novella by Jim Harrison, ''Legends of the Fall'' (1994), Hopkins delivered another Academy Award nominated performance, as President Richard M. Nixon, in Oliver Stone's biopic about the former U.S. President, ''Nixon'' (1995). He then played the title role of the famous painter in James Ivory's biopic "Surviving Picasso" (1996) before portraying another president, this time John Quincy Adams, in the Steve Spielberg directed movie about the 19th century ship and court case, ''Amistad'' (1997), which earned Hopkins another Academy Award nomination. Meanwhile, he also starred, directed and even wrote the score (he's a talented pianist) for the film ''August'' (1996), which was inspired by Anton Chekhov's play "Uncle Vanya."
Hopkins maintained his top position in the business through the late 1990s. He starred opposite Alec Baldwin in Lee Tamahori's survival and relationship drama film "The Edge" (1997), and teamed up again with Brad Pitt for Martin Brest's ''Meet Joe Black'' (1998), a remake of the 1934 film ''Death Takes a Holiday.'' He also co-starred with Antonio Banderas and Catherine Zeta-Jones in Martin Campbell's action film about the fictional Spanish nobleman, "The Mask of Zorro" (1998).
Entering the new millennium, Hopkins had an unaccredited role as Hunt's (played by Tom Cruise) overseer Swanbeck in John Woo's "Mission: Impossible II" before reprising his brilliant Dr. Hannibal Lecter role in two sequels: the Ridley Scott directed "Hannibal" (2001) and the Brett Ratner directed ''Red Dragon'' (2002). He was then seen in the 2003 film ''The Human Stain,'' Robert Benton's take on Philip Roth's novel.
In 2004, Hopkins teamed up again with director Oliver Stone for the epic historical drama ''Alexander,'' a three-hour trek through the life and times of Alexander the Great. Afterward, Hopkins turned up in John Madden's film version of David Auburn's Pulitzer Prize winning play, "Proof" (2005). He was next seen in the comedy-drama written and directed by Roger Donaldson, ''The World's Fastest Indian,'' which was based on the legendary speed bike racer from New Zealand named Burt Munro. He joined the star-studded cast of the Emilio Estevez directed ensemble drama ''Bobby'' (2006), which follows the lives of several people present during the final hours of the life of Senator Robert F. Kennedy, and played a judge in Steven Zaillian's take on Robert Penn Warren's 1946 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, "All the King's Men" (2006). That same year, he was the recipient of the Golden Globe Cecil B. DeMille Award for lifetime achievement.
Recently, in 2007, Hopkins made his feature debut as a screenwriter with "Slipstream," which he also directed, produced and starred in (as a Hollywood screenwriter who begins to confuse his own life with the characters he is creating on the page). The experimental drama premiered at the Sundance Film Festival
Hopkins returned in front of the camera as an adulteress aeronautical engineer in Gregory Hoblit's legal/crime suspense film "Fracture" (2007), and as King Hrothgar in Robert Zemeckis' animated epic film "Beowulf" (2007).
Currently, Hopkins is working on his upcoming films, "City of Your Final Destination," a dramatic film by James Ivory co-starring Omar Metwally and Laura Linney, and "The Wolf Man," a remake of the 1941 horror film in which he will portray the Wolf Man's (Benicio Del Toro) father. He is also set to play movie legend Sir Alfred Hitchcock in an upcoming biopic.
Besides acting, Hopkins also loves painting and musical composition. He started moonlighting as a painter in the early 2000s and when his work first appeared publicly, at San Antonio's Luciane Gallery in early 2006, the canvases sold out within six days. He is also an accomplished symphonic composer and the author of several orchestra compositions.
Golden Globe: Cecil B. DeMille, 2006
New Zealand Screen: Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role, "The World's Fastest Indian," 006
Hollywood Film Festival, The Outstanding Achievement in Acting Award, 2003
Maui Film Festival: Silversword Award (for his lifetime excellence in film), 2003
Hasty Pudding Theatricals: Man of the Year, 2001
Broadcast Film Critics Association: Best Supporting Actor, ''Amistad,'' 1998
San Sebastián International Film Festival: Donostia Lifetime Achievement Award, 1998
ShoWest: Actor of the Year, 1998
BAFTA/LA Britannia: Excellence in Film, 1995
Western Heritage: Bronze Wrangler - Theatrical Motion Picture, ''Legends of the Fall,'' 1995
Evening Standard British Film: Special Award, 1994
Dallas-Forth Worth Film Critics Association: Best Actor, ''The Remains of the Day,'' 1994
London Critics Circle Film: Actor of the Year, ''The Remains of the Day,'' 1994
Southeastern Film Critics Association: Best Actor, ''The Remains of the Day,'' 1994
David di Donatello: Best Foreign Actor, ''The Remains of the Day,'' 1994
British Academy: Best Actor Leading, ''Shadowlands,'' 1994
Los Angeles Film Critics Association: Best Actor, ''Shadowlands,'' 1993
National Board of Review: Best Actor, ''Shadowlands,'' 1993
Academy Awards: Best Actor, ''The Silence of the Lambs,'' 1992
British Academy Award: Best Actor Leading, ''The Silence of the Lambs,'' 1992
Sant Jordi: Best Foreign Actor, ''The Silence of the Lambs,'' 1992
Saturn Award: Best Actor, ''The Silence of the Lambs,'' 1992
National Board of Review: Best Supporting Actor, “The Silence of the Lambs,” (1991)
New York Film Critics Circle: Best Actor, ''The Silence of the Lambs,'' 1991
Boston Society of Film Critics Awards: Best Supporting Actor, ''The Silence of the Lambs,'' 1991
Moscow International Film Festival: Best Actor, ''84 Charing Cross Road,'' 1987
Emmy: Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or a Special, ''The Bunker,'' 1981
Emmy: Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama or Comedy Special, ''The Lindbergh Kidnapping Case, 1976
British Academy: Best Actor, ''War and Peace,'' 1973